Justin Trudeau and New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs discussed the potential closure of the province’s only abortion clinic on Monday, according to the prime minister’s office (PMO).
A PMO release indicates Higgs and Trudeau “discussed shared priorities,” where Trudeau “reaffirmed his commitment to work collaboratively with Premier Higgs and the Government of New Brunswick.”
“The Prime Minister and Premier Higgs discussed key issues, notably climate change, flood mitigation, softwood lumber, and the potential closure of an abortion clinic in Fredericton,” the PMO release states.
“They agreed to continue to collaborate on these priorities, and looked forward to meeting in person soon and to the next First Ministers’ Meeting.”
Last October, Clinic 554 announced it would have to close its doors due to a provincial law that prevents out-of-hospital abortions from being covered by Medicare.
As a result, Adrian Edgar, the clinic’s medical director, said he had to put the clinic up for sale.
NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh was in Fredericton on Saturday, where he voiced his support for Clinic 554 and met with Edgar.
Last week, Singh called on Trudeau to intervene and save the clinic, claiming the Higgs government’s actions contravene the Canada Health Act.
Higgs has said the province does not fund private health care services and abortions are still available in hospitals.
Trudeau campaigned for re-election on the promise to support abortion rights. Upon news of impending closure, Trudeau stated that he would remind Higgs that his government has an obligation to fund out-of-hospital abortions, or the federal government will intervene.
According to his agenda, Trudeau is scheduled to meet with Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil on Tuesday at 3:30 p.m.
— With files from the Canadian Press.